Sunday, June 23, 2013

Reading A Mystery Series

I recently had the privilege of participating in the “Ohioana Book Festival” at the main library in downtown Cincinnati, an event to honor local writers. I was thrilled to have been invited.

As I stood in line to sign in and get my name badge, one of the librarians looked up and said, “Oh, Patricia. I read both of your books and I loved them!” Music to an author’s ears! My smile was as wide as the state of Ohio. It doesn’t get much better than that. Later that afternoon, we had an opportunity to talk for a few minutes and she told me, “The only thing I wish is that I’d read them in order.” Apparently, she read Unfinished Business before reading Mixed Messages.

I knew exactly what she meant. I love to read a mystery series from the beginning because it isn’t just about an intriguing plot for me; it’s about the lives of the characters. In a series, we get to know the characters and care about what happens to them. I always want to know what happens to them next

But, sometimes, it doesn’t work that way. Sometimes, a book by an author I've never read will attract my attention (it's often a new release) and I'll order it and read it. If I really, really like the book and want to spend more time with the characters, I then go back and read the whole series, starting with the first book. Here are two recent examples:

I read Old Murders Never Die by Marja McGraw and I loved it. So, I went back to the beginning and read the four novels that preceded it and I'm so glad I did. What a great series! A Well-Kept Family Secret is the first book in Ms. McGraw’s Sandi Webster Mystery Series for those of you who would like to start with Book One.

Another example: The Rocky Bluff PD series by F.M. Meredith. After reading No Bells, the eighth book in the series, I knew I wanted to read all of her books. I read Final Respects, book one, and went on to read the other novels. I recently learned that Ms. Meredith is working on the tenth book and I can hardly wait to read it.

If you’d like to read my mystery series from the beginning (I’m working on the third book now), I’m offering a chance to win a paper copy of Mixed Messages to someone who leaves a comment on this post. Be sure to include your email address so I can contact you if you're the winner. Happy Reading!
And the winner is Sharon Arthur Moore!